India’s largest nuclear reactor located in the southern state of Tamil Nadu started generating electricity on a commercial basis early Wednesday, local media reported.
The 1,000-megawatt reactor, which was constructed with assistance from Russia, is located in Kudankulam, about 432 miles south of the state capital Chennai. For now, the facility is generating electricity only on experimental basis after its turbine was damaged a few months ago, NDTV, an Indian media outlet reported.
“Yes... We've received the nod from our high command for commencing the commercial power generation 12.01 am onwards," The Hindu, an Indian newspaper, quoted a senior official as saying.
According to an official, the unit has been running at its full capacity of 1,000 MW over the last 10 days, while the commercial production is expected to get the reactor better tariff from the grid, Deccan Chronicle, a local newspaper reported.
The construction of the Kudankulam nuclear power plant began in March 2002. Though Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd had predicted that the first unit will be operational in March 2007, the first reactor of the plant attained criticality only in July 2013.
The $1.2 billion new reactor is expected to provide electricity to southern Indian states, including Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala, NDTV reported.